Being an Ally in your Healthcare Practice

Supporting the LGBT2SQ+ Community 

With Pride month in full swing now is a good time to think about the inclusivity of your practice. Did you know that research shows that people who identify as a sexual or gender minority have many unmet health needs and are less likely to access health care services, including massage therapy? Generally, this happens because of discrimination they, or people they know, have experienced, and a fear that this discrimination will continue in the future. This is an ongoing concern in the LGBT2SQ+ community even though gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation are protected rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Manitoba Human Rights Code. 

There are several ways to being to show your support of the LGBT2SQ+ community and create a massage therapy practice or clinic that is inclusive and welcoming to all. 

  • Use inclusive language. This includes booking processes and intake forms that allow for indicating preferred pronouns and use them when talking to your client. Ensure that advertising and marketing materials, home care or other client resources reflect inclusivity and don’t forget internal documentation like policy and procedure manuals.  
  • Use their preferred name. 
  • Use inclusive images. Use materials on your website, social media and in your waiting room that reflects diversity. Most people will investigate your business before they make an appointment. When people see advertising that represents them, they are more likely to engage with that business. 
  • If possible, have a gender-neutral washroom. This helps alleviate anxiety many feel with traditional male and female washrooms. 
  • Visibly display welcoming signage like rainbow or trans flags. 
  • Be an ally! Show your support by educating yourself and being open to change.  

These are only a few ways to start to create an inclusive practice. If you need more information, click here to go to MTAM’s LGBT2SQ+ resource page.  

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